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‘Remembering terrorists is a sin’ – Racist former minister decries Maaveerar Naal

Speaking Sri Lankan parliament, former minister and Sinhala nationalist Sarath Weerasekara railed against widespread commemorations of Maaveerar Naal and decried the Tamil opposition to the imposition of a Buddhist vihara in Mullaitivu.

In his speech, Weerasekara took aim at Tamil politicians claiming that they were “remembering terrorists” and claiming that memorials for the war dead should be held inside homes and not publicly.

"If your son was a terrorist, if he was a rapist, a killer, there's no prohibition to lighting a lamp inside a house" he asserted. He further attacks Tamil cadres as simply “pawns”.

His statement follows widespread commemorations across the Nort-East in which thousands of Tamils rallied to remember those who sacrificed their lives in the armed struggle against the Sri Lankan state.

Weerasekara also claimed that Buddhist rights and heritage were under threat and that steps must be taken to protect the Sinhala public. Here he attacked the Tamil National Alliance for its opposition to the imposition of a Buddhist vihara at Kurundur Hill, in the Thannimurippu area.

“They were involved in a struggle against the construction of a Buddha statue in the north, how can we expect harmony from such people” he asserted.

His comments concern the imposition of Buddhist monument on a hill-top site of an ancient Tamil temple. Weeraseekara has vowed that military and monks would continue with the construction of a Buddhist vihara in Mullaitivu, despite opposition from local Tamils and a Sri Lankan court order barring any further work from taking place.

The former minister’s statement follows a worrying of Buddhistisation which has been seen as determinantal to religious rights on the island.


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